Governments of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador announce new priority place to conserve species at risk

by ahnationtalk on July 8, 20249 Views

From: Environment and Climate Change Canada

July 8, 2024

Canada’s biodiversity is central to our way of life. As the human impact on the planet increases, a growing number of habitats are lost, and more and more species are threatened with extinction. We must take sustained and thoughtful measures to protect and restore the wildlife and places we love.

Today, the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, and the Honourable Elvis Loveless, Minister of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture, announced the creation of a new priority place for species at risk, the Limestone Landscapes of the Great Northern Peninsula Priority Place in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Priority places are areas of high biodiversity value that are seen as a distinct place with a common ecological theme by the people who live and work there. These places have significant biodiversity, concentrations of species at risk, and opportunities to advance conservation efforts. Focusing on these areas allows us to conserve and restore habitats that benefit many species at once.

This is the 12th priority place to be identified in Canada and the first one in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador. The new priority place encompasses unique ecosystems on the Great Northern Peninsula of the Island of Newfoundland, such as limestone barrens and outcrops; limestone coasts and islands; and limestone highlands, forests, and wetlands that support high biodiversity. This area provides habitats for approximately 40 federally and provincially listed species at risk. It is also an important stopover site for many at-risk migratory birds.

Priority places are collaborative initiatives. The Government of Canada is working with the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, as well as local First Nations, environmental non-governmental organizations, and other partners to support and fund on-the-ground recovery actions, capacity building, and adaptive management within the Limestone Landscapes of the Great Northern Peninsula Priority Place.

The Government of Canada will continue working with all Canadians to protect and recover species at risk and their habitats and preserve Canada’s biodiversity and natural heritage for current and future generations.

Quotes

“Collaboration is key to protecting biodiversity and species at risk. Priority places for species at risk allow us to work with provincial and territorial governments, Indigenous peoples, and other Canadians to protect important habitats and unique ecosystems, such as the Limestone Barrens found on the Great Northern Peninsula of Newfoundland and Labrador. Together, we can implement effective conservation projects that help halt and reverse biodiversity loss.”
– The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

“The Limestone Barrens are a unique habitat that support many highly specialized and rare plant species that live nowhere else in the world. The Limestone Landscapes of the Great Northern Peninsula Priority Place will build on the important work set out in the provincial Limestone Barrens Species at Risk Recovery Plan, which maps the road to recovery for several at-risk species and the conservation of many more rare species. Thank you to our federal counterparts for sharing our vision for this very special place.”

– The Honourable Elvis Loveless, Minister of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture

Quick facts

  • Priority places for species at risk are identified under the Pan-Canadian Approach to Transforming Species at Risk Conservation in Canada. This approach shifts from a single-species approach to conservation to one that focuses on multiple species and ecosystems.
  • Funding for priority places for species at risk was first established under the Nature Legacy’s Canada Nature Fund in 2018 and expanded under the Enhanced Nature Legacy in 2021.
  • The 11 previously identified priority places for species at risk cover nearly 30 million hectares, including two million hectares of critical habitats for species at risk. More than 300 species at risk can be found in these places, many of which have more than half of their range in a priority place.
  • The Government of Canada is providing $2,294,978 over three fiscal years to Limestone Landscapes of the Great Northern Peninsula Priority Place partners. The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is contributing $1,256,550 to this initiative.
  • Identifying the Limestone Landscapes as Newfoundland and Labrador’s priority place will build on goals and strategies outlined in the provincial Limestone Barrens Species at Risk Recovery Plan, released in July 2022.
  • The province’s Limestone Barrens Species at Risk Recovery Plan includes recovery measures for 10 plant species that are designated and listed under the Endangered Species Act and identifies critical habitats for seven species.
  • In addition to the Government of Canada and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, the many partners involved in the new priority place include Miawpukek First Nation, Qalipu First Nation, Intervale Associates Inc., the Limestone Barrens Species at Risk Recovery Team, the Wilder Institute, the Nature Conservancy of Canada, Memorial University, the Stewardship Association of Municipalities, Birds Canada, and The Rooms.

Associated links

Contacts

Kaitlin Power
Senior Press Secretary and Communications Advisor
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change
819-230-1557
Kaitlin.Power@ec.gc.ca

Media Relations
Environment and Climate Change Canada
819-938-3338 or 1-844-836-7799 (toll-free)
media@ec.gc.ca

Linda Skinner
Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture
709-632-8167
lindaskinner@gov.nl.ca

NT6

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